Sport of Dragon Boating – The sport of dragon boating has been one the fastest growing sports with festivals being held throughout continents around the world. The most common boat holds a drummer, a steer person, and up to 20 paddlers paddling to cross the finish line faster than the competition. It is an ultimate team sport with little or no consideration for individuality. Power, speed, synchronization, endurance, and mental focus remain the primary elements of this sport. The most common race lengths are 250 and 500 meters in 4 to 10 lanes, depending on the race. Races are held in four main categories: Novice, Recreational, Competitive, and Specialty.
Legend – According to Chinese legends, scholar and poet Qu Yuan, drowned himself in the Mei Lo River in the Southern Chinese provinces as a result of corruption and uprising during the Chu Kingdom. In an attempt to search for Qu Yuan’s body, the locals raced out in their boats and threw rice dumplings (zongzi) into the water while beating drums and smacking their paddles to steer the fish away from the body. The legend lived on and eventually evolved into the sport of dragon boating as we know it today.